What is chemical engineering?





Chemical engineering: a brief introduction


Chemical engineering is a broad field of engineering that deals with the production of chemicals and the manufacture of various products through various chemical processes.

It usually involves the design of various equipment, process, and systems that are employed in raw materials refining, compounding, and mixing chemicals to produce valuable products.

The chemical engineering concepts utilizes chemistry principles, physics, biology, mathematics, and economics in an effort to produce, use, transport, design, and efficiently transform materials and energy [1].



George Davies: the first chemical engineer ever


The chemical engineering field is credited to George Davis, an Engineer from England who founded the chemical engineering discipline in the late 19th century.

Eng. Davis first published a true overview of chemical engineering practice in his book well-identified as ‘handbook of chemical engineering’ in the year 1904.

This book is based on a series of about 12 lectures that he endorsed at the University of Manchester where he devoted most of his work to consultation and comprehensive studies pertaining to chemical engineering. His book is often regarded as a fundamental reference for chemical engineering education [2].




The role of chemical engineering


The role of chemical engineering encompasses solving various societal challenges such as energy, manufacturing, human health, as well as sustainability.

As such, chemical engineers utilizes this knowledge in pharmaceutical, petrochemical, biomedical, microelectronics, along with environmental industries.

In this regard, chemical engineers are able to devises methods of converting raw materials into useful products that are profitable, energy-efficient, and environmentally friendly. These products include drugs, biomedical devices, dyes, foods, fertilizers, polymers, and petrochemicals [3].



What is chemical engineering


Making career as a chemical engineer


Based on the depth and breadth of studies and training in the chemical engineering field, scholars can join versatile chemical engineering careers and programs, medicine business, national laboratories, law, chemical processing plants, energy sector, nuclear technology, the aerospace sector, automotive, military industries among others [4].


To sum up, chemical engineering is employed almost in all industrial sectors in the production and manufacture of essential products aimed at advancing and enhancing people’s lives. Engineers in this field are mandated in ensuring compliance with safety environmental and health regulations.

They conduct research to improve the various manufacturing processes. They plan and design layouts of equipment as well as optimizing and monitoring the performance of various production processes.


The skills you need to become a chemical engineer




The salary of a chemical engineer




Challenges in the near future:


One of the main headlines of chemical engineering in future is provision of fresh water to the globe through desalination of oceans water and to control the environment with preventing the pollution and manufacturing of environment friendly products.



[1] Kim, I. (2002), "Chemical engineering: A rich and diverse history" (PDF), Chemical Engineering Progress, Philadelphia: American Institute of Chemical Engineers, 98 (1), ISSN 0360-7275

[2] Cohen, C. (1996), "The Early History of Chemical Engineering: A Reassessment" (PDF), Br. J. Hist. Sci., Cambridge University Press, 29 (2): 171–194, doi: 10.1017/S000708740003421X.

[3] American Chemical Society (2021). Chemical Engineering - Available at: https://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/careers/college-to-career/chemistry-careers/chemical-engineering.html (Accessed: 19 January 2021).

[4] Livescience (2021). What Is Chemical Engineering?  Available at: https://www.livescience.com/48134-what-is-chemical-engineering.html (Accessed: 19 January 2021)

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